White Ferns keen to set down the law at Cricket World Cup

Like her team mates Erin Bermingham juggles her career in cricket with her other fulltime career, in the NZ Police force.
Scott Barbour

Like her team mates Erin Bermingham juggles her career in cricket with her other fulltime career, in the NZ Police force.

Being a law enforcer by profession you would think Erin Bermingham follows the rules pretty closely - but when it comes to her international cricket career the Cantabrian doesn't stay within the guidelines too often.

The right handed leg spinner has just 31 one-day internationals to her name, but her 42 wickets at an average of 22.26 has helped her side to some crucial wins over the last few seasons, making her one of the key players of the White Ferns side heading to the Women's Cricket World Cup this month.

Originally from Westport, Bermingham has lived in Christchurch for the past 12 years.

Erin Bermingham has been with the White Ferns since 2010.
Patrick Hamilton

Erin Bermingham has been with the White Ferns since 2010.

She has been in and out of the White Ferns with injury juggling a career in banking and now with the New Zealand Police.

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The women's game has always struggled to pay its way, hence why she and her team mates juggle fulltime careers with trainings, matches and tours.

Although selected for her spin bowling, Erin Bermingham provides a good batting option at the depth of an innings.
Brendon Thorne

Although selected for her spin bowling, Erin Bermingham provides a good batting option at the depth of an innings.

However you will hear no complaints from Bermingham who is just doing what she loves.

"It's full on, it is a challenge to juggle fulltime work with cricket yes. Fortunately I am living both of my dreams so there is nothing to be unhappy about."

Bermingham works on the front line as a public safety officer, which she says comes with its good and bad days.

"You never know what you're going to get, no two days are the same so it keeps things interesting."

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The second challenge is balancing police shift work with trainings and travel to matches.

She said her employers and New Zealand Cricket have made it all possible by being flexible.

"It is challenging in the way the women's game is going, turning more professional. At the start I wasn't even paid so it is coming along nicely. It's a start."

With the help of some individual and private training with coach Haidee Tiffen, the 29-year-old has managed to hold a stable career and a classy cricketing one too.

She has 33 T20 wickets with an average of 17.24, 133 one day runs and 74 T20 runs. 

Tiffen said having Bermingham in the side provides a good option when wickets are low and they need that breakthrough player.

"She has been a good performer, picking up key wickets in certain matches."

Tiffen was happy to see improvements in Bermingham's fitness after coming off a broken thumb over summer. 

"She has been training really really hard. She's been working exceptionally hard and it's really good to see."

The International Cricket Council to help female players in the game turn into full time professionals by doubling the world cup prize pool of US$2 million, but back home the gap between the men's and women's game is giant.

Even with a 100 per cent pay rise last year, the White Ferns earn between $20,000 to $34,000 a year. 

In contrast, the top-ranked Black Caps male cricketer will earn $205,266 for the 2016-17 season, with match fees at $8495 per test, $3682 per ODI and $2407 for a T20 international. 

The bottom ranked Black Cap is on a base salary of $85,585 plus match fees.

The White Ferns leave for the UK this weekend, where they will spend a week in Southampton to train and prepare for their opening match against Sri Lanka in Bristol on June 24.

In this time they will play an unofficial warm up match against Australia who will be staying at Southampton also.

The squad is currently spilt in to two groups, with several of its internationals playing county cricket in the UK already. they will all link in the weeks leading into the cup.

Tiffen is determined to bring home the cup, as the last time the White Ferns walked away as champions was in 2000, when she was playing. 

 

 

 - Stuff

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